Conor McGregor and Michael Chandler are currently filming The Ultimate Fighter Season 31 in Las Vegas where they are serving as the team coaches ahead of an expected fight between them later this year, but in a new interview Dana White has admitted that the exact date and even the weight class they will be competing at remains unknown at this time.
“We’re still working on that and figuring that out,” White said on The Pat McAfee Show yesterday. “There’s a lot of work to do on the Conor fight still.
“They’re going to fight — when, isn’t guaranteed. When, what weight class, what are these guys doing. Conor’s filming this season of The Ultimate Fighter with Chandler, but Conor’s still coming back from that shin break. There’s still a lot of questions and ifs, and we don’t have answers yet.”
TUF 31 will start airing on ESPN from May 30th and ends on August 15th. Typically the season coaches would then go on to fight each other at the next available pay-per-view event, but even though that’s still at least six months away it seems there’s still some uncertainty as to whether McGregor will be ready to compete by then.
The weight class they’ll compete at is something that’s been open to debate for months now due to McGregor having visibly bulked up dramatically during his long layoff after the leg-break he suffered during a fight with Dustin Poirier back in July of 2021, to the extent that he’s now tipping the scales at over 195lbs.
White’s acknowledgement yesterday that the weight class is still undecided is interesting though as when he was last on McAfee’s show a month ago he had responded, “yeah” when asked if the fight with Chandler would be at 155lbs.
From the sounds of things welterweight might still be an option, but Chandler claimed at the weekend that McGregor is actually floating the idea of it taking place at middleweight, a division neither of them has fought at before.
“He’s talking about 185lbs,” Chandler told reporters at UFC 285. “We’ll see. He was talking about 185lbs but I called his bluff. I think he doesn’t think that I’m heavy and as dense as I actually am. I’m sitting here at 191lbs.”
Chandler started his career off at welterweight, but it wasn’t long before he dropped down to lightweight, and he’s stayed there ever since, while McGregor began at featherweight, but has moved up over the years, and had been fluctuating between lightweight and welterweight in his most recent bouts.
Meanwhile, new details have emerged about a reported altercation between McGregor and Chandler on the set of TUF last Friday.
“Apparently, someone was KO’d and McGregor jumped in the cage, shoved Chandler, someone got slapped and the teams rushed the cage,” Sport’s Illustrated’s Amy Kaplan reported. “NSAC broke it up.”